Blake, Eubie at English => English (The Britannica Concise) Of Explained:
U.S. songwriter and pianist. Born in Baltimore, Blake played piano in café s and brothels as a teenager, and in 1899 he composed his first rag, "Sounds of Africa." He and his partner, lyricist and vocalist Noble Sissle (1889-1975), were among the first black performers to appear onstage without minstrel makeup. Their show Shuffle Along (1921), which introduced P. Robeson and J. Baker, was among the first musicals written, produced, and directed by blacks. In 1925 Blake cowrote the score to Blackbirds of 1930. He retired in 1946. He achieved his greatest fame when the musical Eubie opened on Broadway (1978). In 1981 he was awarded the Medal of Freedom. He gave his last concert in 1982, and died at the age of 100.